Open Letter to Joseph K. Grieboski
Institute on Religion and Public Policy
Joseph K. Grieboski
Institute on Religion and Public Policy
1101 15th Street NW
Washington, DC 20005
Dear Mr. Grieboski:
I have webbed the statement of Professor Alexander Dvorkin made at the recent
forum you and he attended at Rhodes, Greece. Dr. Dvorkin, who devoted part of
his time to responding to a statement made by you, cites to and challenges you
about the Gerry Armstrong case. I am that Armstrong, and I also challenge you
and your organization about my case.
Dr. Dvorkin says:
Mr. Grieboski says that without freedom of conscience,
freedom of speech and other freedoms cannot exist. But totalitarian cults deny
freedom of speech. After all, religious criticism is also an inalienable component
of freedom of speech and freedom of religion. We see how totalitarian cults silence
criticism of themselves with endless, grueling court proceedings, so that today
in the USA it is extremely rare that one can encounter in the open press criticism
of totalitarian cults or statements defending their victims. Indicative of this
is the well-known case of Gerry Armstrong, who lost eleven years of his life in
Scientology, for whom a court judgment of a California court now not only prohibits
to speak about his experience in this cult, but even to pronounce in public words
like "Scientology," "Hubbard," Dianetics" and so forth.
For each violation of this prohibition he is supposed to pay 50,000 dollars. If
for a moment one concurs with Scientology's assertion that it is a religion, then
such a prohibition could be compared to a court order prohibiting a former Muslim
from uttering the word "Mohammed," "Koran" or "Islam."
But if we were to say in this case that Scientology is an international intelligence
organization that uses criminal methods, then the prohibition is the equivalent
of prohibiting the victim of organized crime group from saying the word "Mafia"
or "godfather." And this abominable judgment was made by an American
court and is upheld by American law enforcement agencies. Is this called freedom
At the same time, in the annual reports of the US Congress,
publications by other countries that are critical of one or another cult are viewed
and cited as violations of freedom of conscience.
You and your organization clearly support Scientology, and criticize those
countries that oppose Scientology fraud, abuses, criminality and human rights
violations. Scientology, as is also clear, portrays itself as a courageous defender
and promoter of human rights, when the Armstrong case shows that Scientology is
associate Kyle Ballard writes this about his project “The Study of Religious
Freedoms in Russia:”
In modern democracies, religious freedoms are fundamental.
Thus, as Russia is shedding its Communist ideology and emerging as a democratic
state, religious freedoms have become essential. With this in mind, I traveled
to Moscow and Nizhniy-Novgorod to attend the Experts Conference on Religious Freedoms
in Russia and to study the position of religious minorities in Russian society.
My assistant was Alexei Danchenkov, Russian national
and a legal analyst and spokesman for the Church of Scientology. In attendance
at the conference were academics, journalists, state servants, political advisers,
and religious freedoms advocates from both Russia and the United States. The conference
provided an open forum to discuss the state of religious freedoms in the Russian
Federation and allowed U.S. experts to share the American experience. Moreover,
because the Church of Scientology works extremely hard on religious freedom issues,
I was provided with much information the struggles of religious groups around
Your board member Lynsey Bartilson, who is identified on your web site as a
“human rights activist,” is a Scientologist. She describes herself
on her own web site as “the International Spokesperson for Youth for Human
Rights.” She says that the purpose of this Scientology group is: “To
teach youth around the globe about human rights, thus helping them to become valuable
advocates for the promotion of tolerance and peace.” http://www.lynseybartilson.com/
The Gerry Armstrong case demonstrates beyond any doubt that Scientology is
not seeking religious freedom, and not defending and promoting human rights, as
the organization publicly claims, but is a wholesale suppressor and destroyer
of religious freedom and basic human rights.
Scientology seeks to have me jailed, fined and assessed the obscene amount
of $50,000 in “damages” for every religious expression of my religious
experiences, or my religious knowledge, or my religious beliefs concerning this
organization, which insists that it is a religion.
Virtually all of my religious expressions of my religious experiences, knowledge,
or beliefs for which Scientology wants me jailed, fined and ruined utterly have
occurred in Canada or Europe. What Scientology seeks is in direct and flagrant
violation of international human rights declarations and charters, which the U.S.
lists in its own “International Religious Freedom Act of 1998:”
(2) Freedom of religious belief and practice is a universal
human right and fundamental freedom articulated in numerous international instruments,
including the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, the International Covenant
on Civil and Political Rights, the Helsinki Accords, the Declaration on the Elimination
of All Forms of Intolerance and Discrimination Based on Religion or Belief, the
United Nations Charter, and the European Convention for the Protection of Human
Rights and Fundamental Freedoms.
This same U.S. law, H.R. 2431, states as U.S. policy:
(b) POLICY- It shall be the policy of the United States,
(1) To condemn violations of religious freedom, and
to promote, and to assist other governments in the promotion of, the fundamental
right to freedom of religion.
Pursuant to its own law, the U.S. Government should be condemning what the
Scientology organization is attempting to do with me, especially because Scientology
is seeking to deprive me of my religious liberty and other rights and privileges
secured to me by the U.S.’s own Constitution and the U.S.’s own Laws
under color of the U.S.’s own law.
Instead, the U.S. Government supports Scientology in its drive to suppress
and destroy basic human rights, including by condemning those sovereign nations
who oppose Scientology’s suppression and destruction of human rights. Your
organization apparently does the same, in alignment with the U.S. Government’s
anti-human rights position and activities.
As Kyle Ballard observed, Scientology works extremely hard on religious freedom
issues. The Gerry Armstrong case shows, however, that this “religious freedom”
Scientology works so extremely hard on is the “religious freedom”
to suppress, punish and destroy religious freedom.
Scientology has paid millions of tax-exempt dollars to attorneys, private investigators
and other agents, and organization directors, officers, employees and volunteers
to achieve the criminal and condemnable goal of suppressing, punishing and destroying
religious freedom. Scientology has paid millions to achieve that shameful goal
in the Armstrong case alone.
Every Scientology or Scientology-affiliated corporation, organization or entity,
and all of their directors, officers, employees, volunteers, lawyers and agents
sign on to the Armstrong
contract to suppress, punish and destroy religious freedom.
People like Ms. Bartilson, who probably have good hearts, but certainly have
celebrity, are used by Scientology as spokespersons for its “human rights”
front groups. As long as she remains under the domination of the Scientology organization,
with its well known cultic policy and practice of attacking opponents, and even
critics, will she really teach about real human rights, real tolerance and real
peace? As a Scientology representative, Ms. Bartilson is contracted to
suppress and destroy human rights.
Scientology’s ideal for peace is a state in which Scientology and every
Scientology or Scientology-affiliated corporation, organization or entity, and
all of their directors, officers, employees, volunteers, lawyers and agents can
attack, defame, silence, jail, fine, impoverish and destroy a designated target
and he cannot respond. The Scientology organization even claims that all of those
organizations and individuals have monetarily purchased such a state of “peace,”
and use the U.S. courts and the organization’s infamous “Fair Game”
machinery, to collect on and enforce such “purchase.”
Ms. Bartilson’s mother Laurie Bartilson was attorney of record for a
number of years in Scientology’s several litigations – all using the
U.S.’s courts – to deprive me of my basic rights.
Alexei Danchenkov, elsewhere called a spokesperson for Scientology, or as the
organization so ironically calls its Russian operation, the “Hubbard Humanitarian
Center,” is obviously a member of Scientology’s notorious Office of
Special Affairs. OSA has the specific function in the Scientology enterprise,
as directed by enterprise leader David Miscavige, of suppressing and destroying
the religious and other human rights of the organization’s designated targets.
Mr. Danchenkov is a signatory to your
letter of July 24, 2003 to the US House Appropriations Committee Washington,
D,C., and is identified as “Chief Editor, Freedom Magazine in CIS.”
Scientology uses its magazine “Freedom” to attack, defame
and eliminate any opposition to its fraud, abuses and criminality. See, e.g.,
these scandalous black PR attacks on me in “Freedom” that
I’ve saved over the past twenty years. “Freedom” publishes
typical hate literature of a typical rights-destroying totalitarian cult.
I’m sure you can easily see why thinking people would think that you’re
irresponsibly shilling for Scientology, and cults of its ilk. I still retain a
hope, however, that you would attempt to do what is right, and to speak out against
Scientology, which is the religious persecutor in this paradigm.
I’ll send a copy of this letter to Dr. Dvorkin, Mr. Ballard, Ms. Bartilson,
Mr. Danchenkov, Mr. Miscavige, and to the IRPP general address. According to Scientology,
this would amount to $350,000 in “damage” penalties for the organization.
I’ll also post the letter to Usenet and web on my site, so if, for example,
another seventy thousand people read the letter, that would be another $3,500,000,000.
Do you think there is any decency, sense or worth whatsoever in the U.S. courts
being used to silence a person whose slightest utterances of his religious beliefs
have such galactic value?
Is this letter not the writer’s religious expressions about a religion?
Is there anyone at IRPP who would come forward to argue that this letter is not
my religious expression of my religious experiences, religious knowledge and religious
beliefs, or indeed could not constitute religious scripture?
Scientology, after all, pronounces this Hubbard policy letter called “Battle
Tactics” to be “religious scripture.” Are not the words
of the victims and targets of these shocking and criminal war tactics of Scientology
just as holy, just as religious, and just as needful of protection as the “scripture”
that makes good people victims and targets and then victimizes them?
My suggestion is that you and your organization investigate the nature of Scientology,
and that you publicly cease support for Scientology until you know the nature
of what you’re supporting. I suggest that you locate and engage people who
are actual victims of Scientology’s “Suppressive
Person” doctrine, and that you fully and openly investigate this doctrine,
which is key to Scientology’s nature.
If you are satisfied that, having investigated Scientology’s nature,
you and your organization still wish to support this organization, then shilling
or collaboration is understandable.
I look forward to hearing from you, I look forward to your thoughts about the
Armstrong case, and I look forward to a really good debate about Scientology’s
#1-45950 Alexander Avenue
Chilliwack, B.C. V2P 1L5
||Joseph K. Grieboski
Dr. Alexander Dvorkin